Environmental planners evaluate the potential environmental impacts of projects. They do this through a combination of research and monitoring. An environmental planner's job is similar to urban and regional planning, except that these professionals are more focused on the environment's sustainability. They create plans and recommend actions that take the environment into account.

As an environmental planner, you also ensure that development projects comply with environmental regulations. If you identify risks in a project, your job is to find ways to counterbalance them, reduce their impact, or suggest alternative actions.

Environmental planners can work for government agencies or private institutions. In states with strict environmental laws, these professionals are invited to construction projects to ensure that regulations are followed.

To become an environmental planner, you need a degree in environmental science, geography, or related fields. You may also need professional certification.

What Does an Environmental Planner Do

There are certain skills that many environmental planners have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed imagination, reading skills and writing skills.

Learn more about what an Environmental Planner does

How To Become an Environmental Planner

If you're interested in becoming an environmental planner, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 70.3% of environmental planners have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 23.7% of environmental planners have master's degrees. Even though most environmental planners have a college degree, it's impossible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Learn More About How To Become an Environmental Planner

Environmental Planner Career Paths

Average Salary for an Environmental Planner

Environmental Planners in America make an average salary of $71,174 per year or $34 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $95,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $52,000 per year.
Average Environmental Planner Salary
$71,174 Yearly
$34.22 hourly
$52,000
10 %
$71,000
Median
$95,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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Environmental Planner Education

Environmental Planner Majors

10.4 %

Environmental Planner Degrees

Bachelors

70.3 %

Masters

23.7 %

Associate

3.7 %

Top Colleges for Environmental Planners

1. University of California, Berkeley

Berkeley, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$14,184
Enrollment
30,845

2. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

3. Duke University

Durham, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,695
Enrollment
6,596

4. University of Washington

Seattle, WA • Private

In-State Tuition
$11,207
Enrollment
30,905

5. North Carolina State University

Raleigh, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,101
Enrollment
23,708

6. University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

Minneapolis, MN • Private

In-State Tuition
$14,760
Enrollment
31,451

7. Cornell University

Ithaca, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,188
Enrollment
15,105

8. University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor, MI • Private

In-State Tuition
$15,262
Enrollment
30,079

9. Columbia University in the City of New York

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$59,430
Enrollment
8,216

10. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

Top Skills For an Environmental Planner

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 17.7% of environmental planners listed emergency on their resume, but soft skills such as imagination and reading skills are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Environmental Planner Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Environmental Planner templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Environmental Planner resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Environmental Planner Demographics

Environmental Planner Gender Distribution

Male
Male
53%
Female
Female
47%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among environmental planners, 47.3% of them are women, while 52.7% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among environmental planners is White, which makes up 70.8% of all environmental planners.

  • The most common foreign language among environmental planners is Spanish at 46.9%.

Online Courses For Environmental Planner That You May Like

Advertising Disclosure  The courses listed below are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the course, we may receive a commission.
ISO 14001:2015 Environmental management system
udemy
4.4
(2,493)

How to implement an Environmental Management System and obtain ISO 14001:2015 certification...

Environmental and Natural Resources Economics
edX (Global)

How can we create a sustainable society that protects the environment while maintaining a prosperous society? Why have humans caused environmental degradation on local, regional, and global scales, and what can we do about it? Public officials, nonprofit organizations, and private businesses need professionals who can answer these questions in order to design a new sustainable world. Economics is the study of the allocation of scarce resources, including how markets function and how incentives...

Global Environmental Management
coursera

Learn about the best environmental technologies for a sustainable development and how they are managed in various settings around the world. This course gives you an opportunity to learn about global trends that influence our environment and the living conditions and how different management systems and approaches that are used around the world to manage the environment. This includes current environmental technologies built for the environment and technologies for sustainable soil management, g...

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Best States For an Environmental Planner

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as an environmental planner. The best states for people in this position are West Virginia, California, Virginia, and Oregon. Environmental planners make the most in West Virginia with an average salary of $88,323. Whereas in California and Virginia, they would average $86,871 and $83,956, respectively. While environmental planners would only make an average of $83,862 in Oregon, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Virginia

Total Environmental Planner Jobs:
484
Highest 10% Earn:
$115,000
Location Quotient:
1.2 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Connecticut

Total Environmental Planner Jobs:
229
Highest 10% Earn:
$112,000
Location Quotient:
1.61 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Massachusetts

Total Environmental Planner Jobs:
450
Highest 10% Earn:
$113,000
Location Quotient:
1.14 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Environmental Planners

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Top Environmental Planner Employers

Most Common Employers For Environmental Planner

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
1Santa Clara Valley Water District$104,741$50.369
2Parsons$99,358$47.774
3Jacobs Engineering Group$85,338$41.036
4ICF$78,917$37.947
5Georgia.gov$78,269$37.638
6HDR$77,520$37.278
7U.S. Environmental Protection Agency$74,528$35.834
8SWCA Environmental Consultants$74,040$35.605
9AECOM$73,494$35.3326
10King County$72,963$35.083

Environmental Planner Videos